Hours after Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut exhorted the UPA parties to come together against the Modi government, Congress snubbed the Shiv Sena, stating that the party was not a part of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) and its association with the Shiv Sena was limited only to Maharashtra.
Senior Congress leader Ashok Chavan on Sunday commented that it was not appropriate for the Shiv Sena to comment on the leadership of the UPA.
Following the Maharashtra state elections in 2019, Shiv Sena severed its alliance with the BJP and joined the unholy nexus of ideological rivals—Congress and the NCP—to form a government in the state and install a Shiv Sainik as the chief minister. The Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena agreed to a Common Minimum Programme (CMP) with Congress and NCP to form the government in the state.
“Shiv Sena is yet to become a part of the UPA. Our alliance with the Sena in Maharashtra is based on a Common Minimum Programme (CMP) and limited to Maharashtra,” he said.
Chavan also bristled at Raut’s unwarranted remarks on the leadership crisis in the UPA. He also repudiated the speculations of NCP supremo Sharad Pawar taking over the reins of the UPA alliance.
“Sharad Pawar himself has denied the speculation that he will be the next chairperson of the UPA. UPA allies trust the leadership of Sonia Gandhi. So there is no need to discuss the issue,” Chavan said.
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut exhorts parties to join the UPA alliance
Chavan’s biting remarks for the Shiv Sena came a day after Sanjay Raut unsolicitedly commented on the need for the UPA to expand to take on the “dictatorial” central government.
“It is important that all opposition parties come together against the dictatorial attitude of the central government. A weak opposition is not in the interest of the democracy,” the Rajya Sabha MP had said.
Raut further added that besides Sonia Gandhi, there was Sharad Pawar in the UPA fold to provide an effective alternative.
Raut stated that more parties should join the alliance and their leaders should raise their voice against the Centre. claiming that the central government was taking the farmers’ agitation lightly and not paying enough attention to the protests that were continuing against the newly introduced Farm Bills.